Archive for the ‘Medical Technology’ Category

The Prophetic Protein :: Who is at risk for heart attack?

June 25, 2010

Tense hours in the emergency room while tests confirm a heart attack may be rolled back to mere minutes, thanks to a telltale protein marker identified by Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine researchers. Better yet, a routine blood test for the nefarious protein could serve as an early warning to people at high risk :: Take steps now, and you may dodge the dangerous attack altogether.

When the proverbial elephant takes a seat on one’s chest, it is a decided hint: That person might be having a heart attack, or myocardial infarction (MI). Every 25 seconds, someone in the United States has one, according to the American Heart Association, but the oft-reported sensation of chest tightening or pain is just that-a clue. Even in the hospital, it can take eight to 12 hours for current tests to conclusively rule a heart attack in or out. Common alternative culprits in chest pain are intense heartburn or a gallstone attack.

Led by top physician-researcher Daniel I. Simon, MD, investigators at the School of Medicine, however, have discovered a marker of heart attack that promises to cuthours off the time for definitive MI diagnosis-to the tune of confirmation within 10 to 15 minutes of arriving at the emergency room. What’s more, a simple blood test for the novel myeloid-related protein-8/14 (MRP-8/14) marker could give long-used cholesterol screening a run for its money as a signal of MI in the making, years ahead of the cardiac attack.

“Though we gain great insight into patients’ potential risk for cardiovascular disease using conventional biomarkers, we are limited in identifying some people at risk,” says Douglas Vaughan, MD, professor of cardiology at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine and chair of its Department of Medicine. “An additional marker measured in people’s blood could valuably refine our ability to take care of patients with coronary artery disease.”

To hone in on the up-and-coming predictive protein MRP- 8/14, researchers applied an unprecedented scientific approach that scoured entire human genomes for cardiac warning signs. “We were on the hunt. We wanted to know what genes turn on or off in heart attack patients,” explains Dr. Simon, the Herman K. Hellerstein Professor of Cardiovascular Research at the School of Medicine and director of University Hospitals Harrington-McLaughlin Heart & Vascular Institute. Dr. Simon and his team of researchers identified MRP-8/14 as their best-bet marker for heart attack for use in emergency settings and as a potential companion to routine cholesterol screening in the doctor’s office.

Dr. Simon’s account is a tale of finding a little molecule with big potential-a project born in a lab in New England that has grown on a campus in Cleveland.

Read the full story at Medicus.


Philips Healthcare, State of Ohio Announce Global Advanced Imaging Innovation Center

June 4, 2010

A $33.5 million commitment by Philips Healthcare and a $5 million Third Frontier grant from the state of Ohio will provide researchers at Case Western Reserve University, University Hospitals Case Medical Center, and Philips an opportunity to create medical imaging systems that will detect disease far earlier and be safer for patients than current methods.

The company and state announced the creation of the Global Advanced Imaging Innovation Center, to be housed at the University Hospitals Case Medical Center campus, at the same press conference where Gov. Ted Strickland designated Cleveland’s Health-Tech Corridor a state Hub of Innovation and Opportunity yesterday.

The corridor, created by the non-profit BioEnterprise and the economic-development corporation MidTown Cleveland, runs from downtown to University Circle. It includes Case Western Reserve, University Hospitals Case Medical Center (UHCMC), the Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland State University, Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, and St. Vincent Charity Medical Center along with 75 biomedical companies, 45 technology companies and seven business incubators.

“We are pleased that the State of Ohio has awarded Ohio Third Frontier funding to our project,” said Jay Mazelsky, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Computed Tomography and Nuclear Medicine at Philips Healthcare. The company, which employs 1,100 in Highland Heights, has committed more than $6 million annually for five years, to the project.

“The goals of this center will be to provide strategic research, development and clinical validation for advanced imaging technologies, further developing our presence in northeast Ohio and building on our existing partnerships with Case Western Reserve University and University Hospitals.”

Using Phillip’s latest imagers, physicians and researchers from CWRU will help develop a variety of medical imaging technologies expected to enable doctors to see into the body’s molecules and atoms, revealing anatomical and functional information currently unattainable. They will test and improve imagers to provide for earlier diagnostics and better tracking of disease progression while increasing safety and comfort to patients.

Case Western Reserve is the lead agency for the state’s $5 million grant supporting the effort.

“This award is emblematic of the way that members of this corridor work together to achieve more than any organization could alone,” Case Western Reserve President Barbara R. Snyder said of the Third Frontier grant.

Snyder recounted the success CWRU has had in generating business and collaborating with hospitals and industry. As a result of professors’ research, the university has launched 24 companies since 2001; reaped $16.3 million in licensing revenue last year alone; and won an average of $385 million in state, federal and other grants during the last five years. In 2007, Case Western Reserve became lead agency, partnering with University Hospitals and Cleveland Clinic, on a $64 million Clinical and Translational Science Award – the largest single grant the National Institutes of Health has made in Northeast Ohio.

The announcements were made at the BioEnterprise building, in a room packed with Health-Tech Corridor boosters and members, including Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, Cuyahoga County Commissioner Tim Hagan, Cleveland Foundation President Ronn Richard and officials from UHCMC, Cleveland State University, the Cleveland Clinic and media.

The hub overlays the corridor. The new state designation comes with a $250,000 grant and gives research and development within the hub priority for future state grants.

Baiju Shah, president of BioEnterprise, said the Dutch-owned Philips could have chosen any location worldwide, but, “Their decision to locate their Center within the Cleveland Health-Tech Corridor is an example of what can happen when public entities led by the State of Ohio, private institutions, philanthropy and nonprofits collaborate.”

Research Day :: Photo Gallery

June 2, 2010

Research Day :: May 7, 2010

Congratulations to everyone who participated in the Department of Medicine 2010 Research Day. The event had a tremendous turnout of faculty and young investigators. We are very proud of the research you are producing.

Check out the pictures from this CWRUmedicine event …

CWRUmedicine’s Dr Marco Costa feature on ABC’s Good Morning America

May 20, 2010

Marco Costa, MD, PhD, Medical Director, Cath Lab, Director, Center for Research & Innovation, will be featured in an exclusive segment tomorrow on ABC’s Good Morning America between 7:30 and 8 am.

Dr. Costa was filmed in the Stereotaxis Lab in Lerner Tower conducting the United States’ first ever Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) procedure using the newly FDA approved C7-XR Imaging System made by LightLab. A pair of Dr. Costa’s patients will be featured in the story highlighting the speed, accuracy and new imaging technology that provides doctors faster operating times and improved accuracy.

This breakthrough intravascular imaging technology allows the clinician to readily see and measure important vessel characteristics otherwise invisible or difficult to observe with older intracoronary imaging modalities. UH Case Medical Center served as the core lab in the study prior to its FDA approval and was responsible for analyzing the study results. To date, UH Case Medical Center is the only hospital in the country where this procedure is available for patients.

Should patients have access to their records?

April 19, 2010

CWRUmedicine Poll

In the growing world of modern medicine and PHR technology should patients have access to their medical records or is too much information for people to handle? Should physicians be involved in the process to ensure accurate analysis and handle emotions?

Share your opinion and tell us what you think.

Take the poll